United Way unleashes local love to fight #unignorable issues

United Way Elgin Middlesex celebrated the 2018 Campaign launch today at the 3M Harvest Lunch. CEO Kelly Ziegner, Campaign Chair Kyla Woodcock
and friends hopped the Local Love in Action bus out to the county with campaign stops in Strathroy, St. Thomas and Aylmer.

United Way Elgin Middlesex launched its 2018 fundraising campaign today at the 3M Harvest Lunch with a call to rally around two critical issues facing our region: local poverty and youth success.

“Our region has the third highest child poverty rate in Canada. It’s staggering that one in five kids lives in a household that struggles to pay rent and put food on the table,” says United Way CEO Kelly Ziegner. “Our only choice as a community is to stand up and confront these issues head-on.”

The United Way 3M Harvest Lunch marks the start of the organization’s 2018 fundraising campaign. More than just a number, this year’s campaign focuses on galvanizing community support to tackle local poverty and youth success at the root.

“Hunger, homelessness and vulnerable youth aren’t somebody else’s problem,” says Kyla Woodcock, 2018 Campaign Chair and Founder, Forest City Sport & Social Club – and United Way’s newly proclaimed Chief ChangeMaker. “These problems belong to all of us and we can solve them when we stand together. Every donation, large or small, fuels United Way’s crucial work.”

United Way invests millions of dollars every year in a broad range of programs and services that meet urgent needs for our community’s most vulnerable. This includes food, housing, transportation access and recreation close to home. United Way also leads initiatives such as London for All, a long-term solution developed by City of London to eliminate poverty in a generation.

“Complex problems have complex solutions that go beyond a one-year campaign,” says Ziegner, stating that the organization will report on progress at its annual Impact Celebration slated for spring 2019. “More than ever, we need our entire community to come together, show their local love, and help us in our vision of creating a community where everyone matters.”

NEW! Local Love in Action bus takes 2018 Campaign to the County

For the first time ever, United Way took the 2018 campaign on the road to Strathroy, St. Thomas and Aylmer via the Local Love in Action bus, sponsored by 3M Canada and the Boys and Girls Club. 2018 marks a full year since United Way Elgin-St. Thomas and United Way London Middlesex unified to become United Way Elgin Middlesex. The organization now covers a region representing nearly half a million people.

Campaign stops celebrated the amazing ways people show their local love for their community and urged people to work together to address key local issues. Local citizens, media and United Way funded agencies gathered at each campaign stop for a quick message, coffee and ice cream.

The Local Love in Action campaign bus will be in regular use by the Boys and Girls Club for the duration of the 2018 Campaign.

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